Results for tag: Rod Thorn
Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Feb 27, 2011 at 05:31:14 PM

Let’s forget about the Nets’ defense for a little bit, since they’ve forgotten about playing on that end of the court anyway lately. But their offense, even though they still struggle making shots, looks infinitely better since Deron Williams was acquired.

This was expected, but no one could have expected 17 assists in his second game as a Net, on the second game of a back-to-back, and on a night when his team misses 60 percent of its shots.

The Nets knew what they were getting when they sent Devin Harris, Derrick Favors, two first-round picks and $3 million cash to Utah. Williams is one of the top three point guards in the game and may be first overall.

Nets general manager Billy King made a brilliant move to secure Williams when it appeared they weren’t going

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Feb 25, 2011 at 12:34:49 AM

The Nets trade for Deron Williams and almost everyone immediately looks at the negative: that he can opt out of his contract after next season and become a free agent.

Maybe it’s because we live in the metropolitan area and we’re taught to be cynical, but too many tweeters, bloggers, fans and writers are already saying Williams is gone after a year and a half, that he is a 1 ½-year rental.

Maybe it’s true, but let it play out first. That’s what Williams says, what the Nets say, and really what should be done. But in this world where everyone wants up-to-the-minute information and want to be the first to say, we always said he would never stay, just let it play out.

“I’m just looking forward to the opportunity right now,” Williams said

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jan 11, 2011 at 02:30:04 PM

The Nets have been here before, and not just this season.

They’re stuck in-limbo, seemingly exhausting every possibility as they wait for a deal to happen involving a superstar player, who because of his unhappiness and want for what could be green pastures has turned two franchises upside down.

Carmelo Anthony is doing what Jason Kidd did in 2008. The difference this time is the Nets are not acting from a position of strength because they’re not the one dealing the All-Star player.

Don’t get me wrong, the Nets have bargaining power. They have the assets Denver wants: draft picks, young players, the ability to trim salary to the point where the Nuggets don’t have to pay luxury tax.

But the Nuggets really have the final say on if the current three-team 14-to-16-player

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Nov 26, 2010 at 02:22:30 PM

The Nets and their fans have plenty be thankful for, especially after what they experienced last season. There’s direction, vision, money and a plan.

We’re not amongst those that believe 5-10 is something to jump up and down about, but at least they’re showing progress. They’re five games better than last season, and with a stop here and a make there could have another victory, two or three.

The Nets are going to continue to get better and at this point that’s the most important thing. But here are some things for which the Nets –- and their fans –- should give thanks:

1. Mikhail Prokhorov: It’s too early to know whether his initial promise of making the playoffs in Year 1 and winning a championship within five years will happen. But he’s

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Oct 9, 2010 at 05:16:50 PM

Rod Thorn had his reasons for leaving the Nets that may have been right for him personally, but it wasn’t a smart move professionally.

The former Nets president and now Sixers president won’t expound any more than he has about why he left. You’ve heard the reasons: it was time, some things happened in the last 2 ½ years that led him to his decision, personality conflicts, the team needed to go in a different direction and so did he.

But this wasn’t a lateral move for Thorn. It was a step backward in areas such as talent, flexibility, finances and the team’s future.

The Nets, who beat Philadelphia 90-89 in preseason action today on Stephen Graham’s game-winning, buzzer-beating three, are in far better shape than the 76ers all the way around.

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jun 29, 2010 at 11:11:19 PM

LeBron James wants to see the Nets first. That has to mean something.

No one is saying the Nets are the frontrunners to sign James in free agency. For the longest time, most NBA experts dismissed the Nets. Only recently have you started hearing they are ahead of the Knicks and in the race. Our feeling is the Nets do have a shot at the biggest fish in the free-agent pond.

James may decide to go somewhere else like Miami or Chicago. He could stay in  Cleveland. A plausible scenario would be for James to re-sign for three years in Cleveland and then join the Nets when they’re in Brooklyn.

But the Nets shouldn’t be discounted now just because they were 12-70 or are playing in Newark for a few years or are about to lose invaluable and largely irreplaceable team president

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jun 22, 2010 at 10:24:39 PM

Finding holes on a 12-70 team is like trying to find fish and birds on the Gulf Coast covered by oil -– they’re everywhere.

But the Nets filled two of their holes since the season ended. They got an owner who spends (Mikhail Prokhorov) and hired a coach who actually is a coach (Avery Johnson). They figure to fill more needs between this week and next.

The Nets are solid at center and point guard with Brook Lopez and Devin Harris, respectively. They need a power forward, small forward, backup point guard and center, shooters, guys who can defend, who rebound, competitive guys, toughness and winners.

All of that will be hard to find but the Nets have some means with three picks in Thursday's NBA Draft and roughly $26 million for free agency, starting July 1.

Dealing with the

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jun 15, 2010 at 06:00:32 PM

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Avery Johnson officially took over his second team today and probably sounded more optimistic running a team that lost 70 times this past season than he did when he was given the Mavericks job in 2005. And that that had won 52 games the season before.

Johnson did what he was supposed to do and what the Nets needed him to do when he took the podium today for his introductory press conference. He helped breathe life into a team that was essentially dead this past season.

Johnson made people laugh, spoke about the short- and long-term goals of the Nets and more than anything provided hope that the team is in good hands.

The truth is, the Nets are in good hands.

Billionaire owner Mikhail Prokhorov wants to build a dynasty and he has the cash to do it.

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on Jun 10, 2010 at 05:49:08 PM

Avery Johnson may not have been the Nets’ first choice, but might turn out to be the best choice for what they need after one of the worst seasons in NBA history.

Injuries and bad breaks led to 18 consecutive losses to start the season. A lack of coaching, leadership and accountability was why they won just 12 of their remaining 64 games after they were mostly healthy.

They lost all those things when Lawrence Frank was fired, but now have it again in Johnson, the Nets new head coach and first of the Mikhail Prokhorov era.

As a player, there was no questioning Johnson’s leadership and desire. He bounced around for most of his 16 NBA seasons, but spent a good chunk in San Antonio where he played with David Robinson and Tim Duncan and helped the Spurs to the 1999 NBA championship.

Posted by: Al Iannazzone on May 19, 2010 at 06:51:16 PM

NEW YORK – Mikhail Prokhorov said all the right things today, everything Nets fans wanted to hear, even some who are unhappy that his purchase of the team solidified the eventual move to Brooklyn.

Prokhorov was entertaining at his introductory brunch and press conference as the Nets' new owner. He displayed a strong sense of humor, but also exuded confidence about turning the Nets into the envy of the league. Jason Kidd would have loved playing for this guy.

Prokhorov is convinced he can put together a sales pitch to lure the top free agents to the Nets. He’s also convinced the Nets will raise the championship trophy at the earliest in Newark within the next two years and at the latest in Brooklyn within five years.

He also hinted that the most vilified Net last